Monday, January 31, 2011

The Last Weekend of January 2011

I have some awesome friends. I have them here in Utah as well as back in NC! I was able to hang out with some of my good friends from NC this weekend! They came down from Idaho for Nichelles 21st birthday. I don't have any of the group pictures. I'll have to get those from Jay and Nich. So expect those when I get them. But, I do have some. :)

Jenna. Me. Will

After Paintballing!



Chan and Me!

Me and Jay!

Jay, Me, Nich

NC girls!! 

NC. And Jay's roomy Brittany!
The super bowl is this weekend! I am excited even though... I don't really have a dog in the fight. I kinda hate both teams.

This next set of pictures is from roommate bonding! Ha. First Me, Melinda and Marie met up with Melinda's friend Aly at the men's volleyball game. Then  Me, Melinda, Jenna (who came late) and Marie all went to Ariana's chorus concert. After that we met up with Sam (her mom was in town for the weekend) and we played cards! (Ariana went out with her boy Joe! :) ). Finally, we ended the night by watching Tangled on Sam's laptop. It was definitely fun to get to know my roommates better! And just to talk, since we all seem to have such busy schedules!

Marie, Me and Melinda at Ariana's choir concert.

The Men's Volleyball game!
That's Aly. Far left. She's Melinda's friend.

Some of my Sunset photography.
The city of Provo. :)

And again.
Will and I went on a date on Thursday. He rented a car we drove up to the base of the Y. We hiked up a little ways and sat on a bench to just talk. He had brought hot chocolate since it was quite chilly outside. We had a pretty cool view (minus the smog) so, luckily I had my camera. (Hence the 2 pictures above). After that we drove to Olive Garden for dinner. He had remembered how I said that I loved that place. Especially the dressing. I know. I sound like a fat kid.

Church was fun as well. Fun meaning early. Ha 8:30am is a trial of my faith every week! But, it is getting easier. I am playing for Anthon (the boy's RA) to sing in Sacrament meeting in 2 weeks. Well, not this Sunday but, next. I have it down for the most part. There are a few sticky places. But I practice for at least an hour everyday. My mom would be proud. :)

Life Is Good. :)

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Trip to the Grocery Store!!

So a quick run to the grocery store is something me and Jenna try to do every week. Just to stock up on the necessities. Mainly milk. Haha. This trip was more eventful where I spent ALMOST 30 dollars. I kept the receipt to blog about all our goods! I'll tell you the item, price and reason. Then you can tell me if the Creamery is overpriced, like I think it is.

(I'll admit this trip I splurged. I was in a good mood and having not eaten any snack foods since Christmas break I bought what I wanted. I was hungry and happy. I hear you should never go shopping hungry. Oops).

1 Nabisco Chewy Chocolate Cookie Package- Snack food. I was feeling deprived. $3.79
1 Turkey Breast (packaged turkey)- More yummy turkey sandwiches in my future. $ 3.98 (it was a lb. of turkey).
1 Package of sliced cheese- sandwiches- $1.35
Packaged noodles, 2 strogonof, 1 chicken and 1 broccoli alfredo-yummy food.- 4/$5
1 Nestle Cookie Dough- Missing Lewis's party tonight. So i'm making him cookies. :) $3.49
1 bag of Ruffles BBQ Chips (I haven't had chips in a month. I was craving them). $3.99
1 Tomato- for sandwiches- $.89
1 Bag of Tostitos- Me and Jenna are making salsa, so she bought veggies and I bought chips. She bought more cause she's making dinner tomorrow for her friend and serving the salsa.. But, promised me some. oh ya. $3.99.

Me in my SUPER cute hat that I love. However, I thought a hunter was a correct description of my outfit, so I posed with meat.

I look weird. But whatever I suppose. I look good in person. I promise.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Far TOO Cold.

So there's this HUGE game tomorrow. San Diego #6 Vs. BYU #9 at the Marriott center. Me, Jenna, Will, Luke, Ben, Skylar and Quinton all wanted to go. But here's the catch. You had to be in line at the Marriott Center with your sports pass at 12 at which time they were going to distribute out wristbands. Kinda strange huh? That only the first 5000 people to get there would get wristbands but more than 5000 people have sports passes? Rip off huh?

Anyway. 11am rolls around. Me and Will are walking to the Marriott from our Book of Mormon class. We meet Luke at the front of the Marriott. Luke has a class at 12 that he can't miss. So, he can't come anymore. Skylar is giving someone a blessing. Ben has a once a week class at 12 as well. So, he didn't even come. I dunno where Quinton was during all of this. But, like good friends Will and I get in line. And we wait. Jenna calls around 11 and says she's bringing a blanket and an umbrella. Because as I forgot to mention earlier... it's snowing. And sticking. And it's freezing. So, we wait. Jenna comes. And the 3 of us wait and try to keep ourselves warm and entertained. We play the "let's go in a circle and name something that's hot and see if we get warm cause we're thinking about hot things" game.

It didn't work. Anyway, so 12:33 comes around. We haven't moved 5 feet. (People had camped out for this. And been there all morning. So we weren't even close to the front of the line. It was CRAZY long). Finally, after much discussion I decide that it really isn't worth this. And we haven't moved. And it's too cold. And Will has class at 1. And Jenna missed her 12 class. And tomorrow we have to BE AT the Marriott to wait in another line at 4 when the game starts at 8pm. And I have class at 4 tomorrow and so does Will. And why don't we just watch it with Luke, Ben, Skylar and Quinton and order pizza or something? Well, that thought wins me over. I decide to leave. Will decides to leave. Jenna wants to stay but, feels like a loser and doesn't want to be left alone.

So we all leave and come back to eat pasta and hot chocolate before Will has to leave for class. It was a good effort right? We tried? But in the end... it just wasn't worth it. In the words of Chase (from a text I received):
"I am not going to sit in the cold for hours to get something I supposedly already paid for and am entitled to... dumb. And it's snowing."
"Where is you school spirit?! :)"
"I gave it to the people waiting in the snow. Who are waiting to get what should already be theirs."

I left mine with them as well. I'm sorry BYU but there had to have been a better way of doing this.

Snowing!! You can actually see it falling in this picture!

Walking to the Marriott. 


We all look SO bad. But, that's what makes this picture good huh?

Will our umbrella holder was cut out.
Oh well. We look good. Ha.

Well, Will wasn't quite ready as he was in mid-sentence/squat.

People IN FRONT of us.

People in front and behind us. It was hectic.
OK! So, to end this post I figured I should end with 2 things of the day that impressed me!

  1. On the way to the Marriott a little old lady was scraping the snow off the windows of her car. I didn't notice her until I see Will walk towards her and say "excuse me ma'am. Would you like me to help do that for you?" She smiled and said no she was just finishing up but thank you. I was impressed because no one else had stopped and heck I wasn't about to?!
  2. BYU is number ONE in the nation for the Country's most popular school. With a 76.9% yield rate they beat Harvard who had a 76.5% and Stanford. This is like the 3rd or 4th time we've been number one!! And this is the second year in a row! Read it (it's short) to find out just how awesome we are! :)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Student Wards.

As I sat in Sacrament meeting today I was thinking about the difference between Student wards and home wards. Let me tell you, I love the student wards. I love that all the speakers are my age. I love that the ward clerks, relief society teachers and my home/visiting teachers are my age. I really like having (most) everything run by us. It's nice.

Student wards I take it, are different from singles wards. In that not everyone is the same age. In that case my order goes (from best liked to least liked):

  1. Student Wards
  2. Home Wards
  3. Singles Wards
Also, I like that there are no crying babies. And that I have to wake myself up for church that it's my responsibility to go. I like it. It's nice. :)

Anyway, I dunno what else to say about it. I just like it. I feel the spirit a lot more and I tend to be a lot more focused. I like making comments and I enjoy hearing comments from the other kids my age. It's really nice to go somewhere where EVERYONE believes what you do. It's fun to be the only one and to get to talk about your faith and yourself, but it's also a lot of fun to go and be surrounded by others and discuss your faith. 

Well, here are the much promised pictures. There are more on facebook if you care to look! :)

Ben (Striped shirt)
Will (Jacket)
Charmers huh?

Luke is the only new one in the picture. He's in the navy. 

Will likes to make CREEPY faces in every picture. Well most every.
But this showed the love. Even if ruined by him. ha

All of us!

The Best of all of us. Sorry Luke.


OK. Let me preface this post with the fact that I have been very sparing with the details of my life/friends/people I hang out with this semester.

I'll give a brief rundown. 

Luke: Really funny and nice. From Indiana. He knew Jenna before coming out here. They were friends. 
Will: A big goofball. Funny, kind and in 2 of my classes. He's a really cool guy.  He's in ROTC. I don't know why that's important. He's a goober too. From Virginia, D.C area.
Ben: From Wisconsin. Nice as well. They are all easy to talk to. He is one to joke around a lot but, make sure you know he's joking and is just a good guy.
Skylar: Very good guy. He's sweet. He is from Utah. He goes home occasionally. He brought REALLY good peanut butter chocolate chip cookies home today.
Quinton: Shy at first. Keeps the other guys in line. He has a very like "righteous" sense of humor I guess. I dunno. He's funny with what he says but, I don't know. It's hard to explain.
Sam: Cute little blonde roommate. She is from Arizona. She works in the Cougareat. She is adorable and funny. She is dating Jared.
Ariana: From California! An amazing cook! She made a chore chart and guess what... we actually stick to it. We do chores every Saturday thanks to her. And the apartment is CLEAN!!!
Marie: Is from all over. Such a nice girl. She is pretty funny. She has the sarcastic sense of humor. But, is easy to talk to as well.
Melinda: SO sweet. Anything you do she is interested in. And genuinely interested. Not the fake kind that sometimes people do. But, the real kind.
Jared: Sam's boyfriend. Me and Jenna try to make them awkward (hence my weird outfit that one day). He's a good guy. Funny and puts up with a lot when me Jenna and Sam are in the same room. :)
(You should all know/have heard about the Tanners, Mitchell, Lewis, James and Paul).

Anyway, to top things off. I was still on my dating sabbatical (as my mom called it). Kind of. I would go out on dates but, strictly as friends. So, in lieu of having few girl friends, I found myself hanging out with Luke, Will, Ben and Skylar all night. It's not a bad thing I love my guy friends. They are a lot less drama then girls. And actually a lot of fun. So, I didn't mind at all. The company is good. And they are all cute guys so that helps.

Ok. Here's what happened. Me and Will had been texting/talking a lot since we had classes together and he's in my new ward and all that fun stuff. I think he's cute. He's not like drop dead gorgeous but he's cute. And his personality and sense of humor just make him all that much better. 

We all (me and the boys) hung out and watched Despicable Me. They asked who I hung out with. When I said "You guys, Jenna and Sam, and like 2 other groups of guys from my old ward.... is that bad? Like that I have no girl friends? It used to be sorta the other way around." They said "no. to be honest we like hanging out with you (and Jenna when she comes). You're cool. Besides, we mostly hang out with each other. Like just us guys." I took that as a compliment. So we went to Panda express from like 9:10-10:45 and just talked and hung out.

I went home after that. They wanted to borrow one of our movies. I texted Will a list of the movies. He said surprise us! So, I met Will halfway. So like 5 feet out of our building and like 10 feet out front of his building. We made small talk. I handed him the movie (Killers). We awkwardly said goodbye when he said "Hey.. I wanted to tell you but not in front of the other guys... that I think you're really pretty." I said "thank you..." and smiled! Like what am I supposed to say?! So, he said "thanks for the movie." "Anytime. See you at church tomorrow?" "Definitely." And then he turned and kissed my cheek.

You know what? I kind of liked it.

 Dating sabbatical legitimately over... possibly. I'll keep you posted. 

(I don't have a picture for today. I forgot to bring my camera. Oops. So, here's a throwback from Halloween?)

I think it's funny. I can't remember if it's on here already. But, oh well.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Taylor Swift...

In order to try and keep posting everyday that I can I figured I would go ahead and do this one. I got home a couple minutes ago. Facebook was boring. No new emails. So, that led me to my blog.

I love Taylor Swift. Not just because we are best friends. ;) But, because her songs apply weirdly to every aspect of my life. I like the saying "bad day? There's a Taylor Swift song for that." Now don't get me wrong. Today was wildly good. Full of laughs and good friends. But, I could listen to TSwift all day everyday. It's a weird obsession...

Some of my favorite songs and good lyrics lately are:

  • "Ours"- "Don't you worry your pretty little mind... people throw rocks at things that shine..."
  • "Back to December"- "I go back to December all the time..."
  • "The Story of Us"- "And i'm dying to know is it killing you like it's killing me?"
  • "Fearless" (ALWAYS a classic)- "And I don't know how it get's better than this..."
  • "Today was a Fairytale"- "You told me I was pretty when I looked like a mess..."
  • "Dear John"- "Well maybe it's me and my blind optimism to blame..."
  • "Breathe"- "You're the only thing I know like the back of my hand..."
  • "The Best Day"- Just reminds me of my mom I just about cry every time I listen to it... " But, I know I had the best day with"
  • "Hey Stephen"- Basically the whole song I've loved from day one! Not too sure why though! "Hey Stephen I could give you 50 reasons why I should be the one you choose..."
  • And of course... "Our Song"- A crowd favorite. ;) "I've heard every album, listened to the radio... waiting for something to come along that was a good as our song..."
  • Now don't get me wrong, I love "Tim McGraw", "Picture to Burn", "The Way I Loved You", "Mine", "Forever and Always", "Love Story", "Last Kiss", "Better Than Revenge", "White Horse", "Jump Then Fall" and really any of them. It's kind of sad huh?
Basically I love her music. It's just good. There really is nothing else to say! It helps me think. It allows me to jam out! It connects. It makes sense? And yes, that is very angsty teenage girl of me to identify with a girl who sings about love and really nothing else but, I've got one more year before I have to be totally grown up right?

I don't want to write about love. I don't want to think about school. I just want to sit and be. To listen and sing along with TSwift. We are BFF's right? :)

Typing this post...

I was trying to accent just my headphones... Fail.

Like the shirt?

Basically all the same picture. Sorry for the repetition.
Anyway... I found this quote on the real bf's twin-life-stealer/arch enemy's blog. So, I stole it.

"In real life, saying the right thing at the right time is beyond crucial. So crucial, in fact that most of us start to hesitate, for fear of saying the wrong thing at the wrong time. But lately what I've begun to fear more than that is letting the moment pass without saying anything. But if you know how you feel and so clearly know what you need to say, I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift


Thursday, January 20, 2011

College Reflections!

One of my young women's leaders sent me a facebook message the other day with a list of the following questions:

1. What do you wish someone had told you about college?
2. What temptations are the same from high school, what are different temptations than you experienced in high school?
3. what has been disappointing or different from your expectations?
4. what is your favorite part about college?
5. Is living on your own different than what you thought it would be like....better or worse?
6.How often are your beliefs/morals/principles challenged by your friends? And in what ways are they challenged?
7. How has your relationship with the Lord changed...better or struggling a little?

I figured for my blog it can't hurt to keep those answers for my own personal reflection right?! 

1. Being away from home. It sounds like a lot of fun. You get to hang out with you friends whenever and wherever you want to! You get to go to bed when you choose. You get to do your homework whenever you’re feeling it. Heck, you get to eat and spend your money however you choose. One of the hardest things about leaving was leaving my family. It really is so true that you don’t know what you got till it’s gone. I miss my family like crazy. The things you can’t stand about them become the things you miss the most. The things you love about them haunt you and make you miss them more. But, it is fun. It is a lot of fun. And, I am thankful I had the opportunity finally learn what it will be like to be on my own. I miss my family, but it has taught me what love truly is. And, what it means to truly miss someone.

2. Ok. Let me put the rumors to rest. ;) BYU has drinking, it has drugs, it has sex, and it has everything any other school has. It is on a smaller scale and it is kept under wraps. But, it is here. It may not be as much of a temptation because the majority of people frown upon it. If you want it, it’s here. However, there is a different kind of temptation. You lose your identity. Ask yourself who you were in high school. I’ll tell you, you were the Mormon. You were the Mormon and people labeled you as such. However, out here… everyone is Mormon. You surround yourself with thousands of people who are guess what… just like you. But, their standards are different. Some will watch R rated movies, some will drink, some will think necking and petting are OK ;) (that was for you) and some will abide by every rule that is under the sun. It’s finding out where you fit in. What your standards are. And when all the Mormons are putting in an R-rated movie do you have the guts to be the one to stand up and say something?

3. Something that I have been disappointed with is myself! I was (pretty much) an all A student. And grades were not hard to maintain. I’m sure all of you know that as well. I’m sure it’s very easy to make good grades and I’m sure hardcore studying is not what you do on your weeknights. But, it is required. I made a 3.28 GPA my first semester. My second C ever. Ever. Like in the history of my grades. I was disappointed but who cares? Everyone makes a C. It’s actually healthy. Classes are hard. You think you’re prepared but that first exam comes around and guess what… you weren’t you gotta study! You have to work to make the grades. I was disappointed that I slacked a little! Something different than my expectations though was again the severity of the schoolwork! I thought oh I can handle it but, it is HARD HARD HARD. Get used to working hard because it doesn’t get any easier.

4. I love the freedom. I love being able to go wherever and whenever I want and NOT HAVING TO CHECK IN! It is such an amazing feeling to be on your own. It’s sad but it’s worth it! Making your own schedule and picking who and what you do is so great. It’s hard to manage your time and not procrastinate. But, getting out of class and going out to eat without calling to ask if it’s ok first is like so liberating! Ha. I also like meeting new people. It is so fun to sit next to people and just talk! Granted not everyone is nice and willing to talk but, it is fun to just be who you want to be! I have the goal to go to the same class every day and sit next to someone different each class. I want to give them a fake name/background story. But, I always try to sit next to someone who looks fun/cute… so I never do. Because I don’t want them looking for a Stephanie Harting on facebook! But, meeting tons of new people is a plus. It’s nice to get out of Charlotte and talk to people who have had far worse, harder, more exciting etc… lives!

5. I kinda covered this in the beginning. Different. And the same. Making food sucks. I miss my mom’s home cooked meals. I miss MY bed. MY room. MY car. MY job. The list goes on and on! But, it is different in that while I knew I’d miss my family, I miss them more than I thought possible. It is different in that it feels good to manage your life. It is different in that I can’t go home. But, it is better because I love my new roommates. I love my new ward. I love being here. I can’t imagine going anywhere else. I love that I belong! College has it’s ups and downs. It’s a roller coaster for sure. But at least the ride is fun right?

6. Ok. They are challenged a lot. Because, there are people who have done far worse and people who have done NO wrong (it would seem). It becomes hard to say where you lie. Because, well everyone judges! Either you’re super inexperienced or you’re bad. It takes a lot of thought to answer some questions. But, once you find the people you trust it’s awesome. However, they are challenged! You will meet (out here) all kinds of people from literally all over. They will say/do things that you would never do. And they will ask you to join. The question becomes do you say anything. Is a NCMO (non-committal make-out) really that bad? Is one R-rated movie so terrible. The list goes on and on. But that is only until you find your place. With your roommates. Or the girls in your class. Well, I have tons of guy friends, but, once you find you niche it gets better. It gets easier. There will always be temptation. Whether it is to cheat on a quiz or homework, watch an inappropriate movie or say/do things that weeks ago you would’ve never done, the temptation is there. Be strong! As Alma says " O thou child of hell, why tempt ye me? Knowest thou that the righteous yieldeth to no such temptations?" :) And you can take that knowledge to any school you go to!

7. Being at BYU has strengthened my relationship ten-fold. It really is the Lord’s university. You walk around campus and everyone has the same religious beliefs as you. Basically. Yes they will differ and yes they are on different levels. But, everyone knows who Nephi, Joseph Smith or Thomas S. Monson is. It’s comforting. But, college has been hard. It is nice knowing that because we have the gospel we have medicine for the hard times! Life isn’t always going to be easy. There is going to be temptation. There are going to be hard things and hard classes and struggles. But the Lord is there and he is always there. I love going to a college where I can take religion classes. They are ridicuoulsly hard. They have been some of my harder classes. But they are well worth it. I have learned more in those classes than I have at any fireside or seminary class. Because BYU is unique in that it offers “institute” as a class and you go more than once a week, your testimony grows. ONLY IF YOU PUT THE EFFORT IN. I love going. I love praying. I love my Heavenly Father and my Savior and I know He lives. How truly amazing it is to go to a school that intertwines faith and education. It truly is wonderful to go to a school where prayer is prevalent. I love it here. I love being here. I am where I belong. BYU is amazing! My first semester was hard, yes. And I relied on the Lord and my parents a lot. But, it was not impossible and CLEARLY I made it through. It had the bad but it was also filled with the good!

Look into it! It’s not hard! All the information (deadlines, scholarships and overall information) are there on the website! BYU-I is an amazing school as well! I have met several people who go there now and friends who went/are there. They love it. Any school is good though! Don’t mess around too much or get to upset to leave high school because it only gets better! :)

Hopefully these answers reflect the roller coaster ride of emotions my first semester truly was!!

Picture time! :)

Aly, Melinda (one of my new roommates), Me and Jenna after the basketball game against TCU!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


Sore. Sore is uncomfortable. Sore is not fun. However, sore is worth it! I went snowboarding twice. It beat my butt! But, I love it! It really is one of the more fun things I've done! I took a couple of pictures. Especially so my WONDERFUL parents can see how cute/legit I look! :)

Me and Mariss

Saturday at Wolf Mountain

Monday at Powder Mountain

Anyway, so I had a blast to say the least! I am kind of in love with it! Ha i'm not too good yet! But, hopefully i'm getting there! I plan to go with my CuZ, Russell (and some other people), Lewis and that crew and possibly Sam and her boy Jared (maybe Jenna) by the end of the season! And hopefully more than once!

I don't have much else to say! We beat TCU in basketball tonight! 83-67!! The real challenge is next Wednesday when we play San Diego! We are ranked #9 in the country!

Today was mostly pictures. Hopefully tomorrow will be more inspiring and fulfilling. Hopefully. 

Night. :)  

Thursday, January 13, 2011

So,  Today I have my second day of ice skating class! I am excited to go and perfect my moves on the ice. ;) Hopefully I can get to go a couple times outside of class as I really like skating! I am super excited! I also got to see Condeleeza Rice today! She came and spoke for our forum! It was really good and she is quite funny!

She talked a lot about the importance and difference her family had made in her life. Which is so true. I am so grateful for my own family. And their love and support. For my parents willingness and means to start a fund for my education and the help they've been able to offer me. I know very few people have that opportunity. I know when it comes to parents I am TRULY blessed.

She also addressed the unique country we live in. That we are able to live in a country where we have a Democracy. And what a wonderful system of government it is. She talked about how different it is that we live in a country that when we get tired with the people leading us we have the power to "kick the bums out." How true!! And how lucky we are that we are able to switch up our leaders. There are so many countries out there that are continually oppressed but are unable to actually do anything about it.

Then she talked about the opportunities we have and the importance of an education. Which are both things which are also unique to the United States. The fact that we are able to go and do what we want, when we want (essentially) because of the country we live in is one that I think the majority of us take for granted. I know I certainly do. A lot of times I don't think about the fact that I am able to get a job, go to school and worship the way that I want where there are millions  billions of other people who do not have the ability to do so.

She talked about having a firm belief that you brightest future and change for good are possible. She also stated that "the headlines of today are not how history will remember it." That it is the overall outcome that is remembered. It is important that we live with that same idea. That the trials and downs of the day are not how our life will be remembered. That what we do with our life and knowledge is how we will ultimately be remembered. She talked about remembering the past. That in 1989 after the USA kicked Russia out of Afghanistan we abandoned them. We allowed a group called the Taliban (the meaning of Taliban is students), we allowed a group of students to come in and take control of 95% of this failed state. They created their government and rule and on 9/11/01 they attacked the United States. She stressed our importance to remain there and to help Afghanistan, to not abandon them a second time but, to work to build them up with an inspired outcome in mind.

Finally, something I thought was interesting was that she is a classically trained pianist! It was her major for 2 years in college. When the summer following her sophomore year she went to a piano camp that was filled with prodigies. She said when she saw a 13 year old boy sit down and play perfectly the first time a song that took her months and months to learn she realized something. She said "it was then that I came to the realization that with my degree I was going to end up teaching 12 year olds how to murder Beethovan or playing in Nordstrom. It was then I decided I needed to change my major."

Such a jokester. :) Haha anyway! Here are the promised pictures! And their explanation! Since I didn't blog yesterday... I have a couple of pictures!

Sam and her Boy were cuddling on the couch. In an attempt to break up the
lovefest... I wore the weirdest outfit I could come up with and walked into the
kitchen to make a drink. They weren't quite sure how to react. I dunno. Don't ask
it was late.

Me and Jimmer Fredette the star BYU basketball player!

My favorite boys! Lewis (with the sign) Mitchell (side profile)
oh. And their turbans.

At the Woman's game!

Bellatrix! She is in some guys room in our new ward! Needless
to say we were fast friends! We hang out with them a lot!
Oh. And I love Justin Bieber.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Couple Things I Learned Lately...

In my Study Skills class we talked about BYU and learning to do better academically.

First! The average ACT score for 2010 incoming Freshman was a 28. The Average GPA was a 3.79. Over the past 3 years the number of applicants has increased and the number of accepted applicants has decreased. So, in essence if you don't fall above those scores, you fall below it. (I'm sure other schools have similar statistics but... I'm at BYU so that's why I picked here).

He then showed a picture where it had the BYU logo and the words saying... BYU where you best hasn't been good enough since 1875. We are surrounded by people and teachers always telling us we did good but we could've done better. Or we did bad and there is room for improvement. A student raised his hand and said something I've noticed a lot here is that people have the mindset "if i'm not smart at EVERYTHING, i'm stupid."

We talked a lot about HOW BYU is different from other schools. He asked "how many of you came from somewhere where you were the only or one of few members at your school." Five of us raised our hands. "And what were you known as in school?" "The Mormon." "And now what... now what are you known as?" -Silence- "You've come here and you've lost your identity.

You are now ONE of 30,000 students. Scary huh? I'm sure many of you experienced feelings of fear, identity loss and loneliness. It's normal.

Moving along. There are 3 Tips to do better Academically:

  1. The desire (to learn)
  2. A belief in yourself
  3. Self-Discipline
You have to exercise your brain. Texting takes... LITTLE brain power. Same with video games and TV. To exercise your brain you must read,  communicate, go to class, participate with others, WORK on schoolwork and be active and interactive. It is alright to sit and relax watching TV, playing video games or texting. But, those things should not take up very much of our day. Just as you can make a muscle stronger by exercise you can make it weaker or less sharp by little to no exercise.

He showed us a video about Kim Peek. I had never heard of him. But, I found the video quite remarkable. 

I'm not sure why I thought this was so cool. Rereading it... it's really not. But, I typed it all out so it's staying. That video is my picture for the day. Sorry! I forgot to take one with Matt when we went out to lunch today.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Thoughts altogether...

Ok! So recap of today...

I had a BLAST for FHE today. Our FHE brothers are BEYOND fun.  They are all very sweet and into actually having FHE or Family Home Evening. And actually planning it. It's a nice breath of fresh air.

I met a boy from Ukraine today! He sat next to me in one of my classes! It had been a long time since I'd heard someone speak with a Russian accent so, it took sometime getting used to! His name is Maxim. Or, Max.

Ha I opened a bank account with Wells Fargo. I need to access my money.

Umm.. I took my 2nd ASL class today. I hope it's not too early to say I love it. I'm slowly falling in love with using the language. And I just feel such strong feelings for my Professor. It's weird to explain. Like she talks well signs (she's actually deaf) and I can just tell she is SUCH a sweet person, with such good intentions. And like (In a not weird way) I feel love for her. And compassion. It's like I just want to help her. Like I want to give her my hearing even just for a day. It's really not fair. I can't imagine going through what she has had to her whole life. Not being able to hear would be near unbearable. Never hearing her own voice, hearing others, hearing the TV, even whistles when playing sports (instead the ref has to throw his hands in the air to signal a call), never hearing praise, or support. I just feel like it is all taken for granted. I am so thankful that I have the ability to walk, talk, see, smell, hear and have full function of my brain and body. How often we complain about our inability to do something, but, it can always be worse.

A picture as I digress... This next part is of a more spiritual nature than anything else.

At the game on Saturday!

I had an amazing interview with my new Bishop yesterday. He is such an inspired man. I felt the Spirit so strongly as I walked into his office. As I talked to him about my family, my friends back home, the things I wanted to do with my life, my talents and hobbies, I knew he was truly interested. I knew he WANTED to know. Something I feel I need to write down so I don't forget it is something he said to me. As we were talking about my life goals he said " I want you to know, it didn't take long for the Spirit to tell me what a special young woman you are. You are destined for greatness. Wonderful things are headed your way. Be careful with the choices you make, be careful with the young men. Especially here things tend to move much faster than they would anywhere else. But, I know you of all people will make the right decisions." The whole experience was something I needed at this time. I finally feel like i'm in the Ward I belong. It feels right here. The people are nice and the boys are friendly. The people here genuinely care. I feel like I will become a better person here more than I would've in my other Ward.

He also counseled me on the importance of prayer and daily scripture study. I had made a resolve to pray morning and evening before I left. I did that for a good week. Upon arriving home I got out of that routine partly because of jet lag and partly because I had broken my habit. I just was less focused. I woke up late and rolled out ready to start my day. I went to bed late and passed out.

But, I am determined to start that habit again. Starting last night. Elder Christofferson came and spoke to us last night. I feel so privileged to be around General Authorities and men of great influence (Condeleeza Rice comes the 13th!!). Seeing them speak in person is unreal. He told us to prepare now for the future but not to live in it. He counseled us to start doing things now to prepare us for the future. He told us to live day by day. He talked about prayer. He incorporated Moses and the Children of Israel and their wandering for 40 years. He told the story about the manna falling from the sky. How to be fed they needed the Lord's help. That it was through Him and keeping His commandments they were able to be fed and eventually provide for themselves. He told us how important it is that we live by the same principles. Manna is known as "Bread from Heaven" and it is a type of Christ. That we should live our lives in similar ways. That we should seek Christ's help and guidance everyday and night. We weren't sent here to fail, our existence here isn't chance and we don't need to do it alone.

It was just such a good fireside and day altogether. We talked about prayer at church as well. And becoming more Christlike! I don't think it is just a random common theme that seems to be going around! It definitely was brought to my attention (in my opinion) because I so need to work on it!. We live in such a tough world. Even here at BYU (the gathering of all Mormons or Happy Valley as it's called) there are places to err. And things to mess up and ways to be unkind and just plain bad! It too is full of the good and the not so good. I realized from the speakers that it just doesn't make sense for me to try to do it all on my own! To take the knowledge I've been given for granted. I think something I love most about religion is that everyone is different. Everyone believes in something different. Everyone understands things on a different level. But that most religions are taught to pray. I mean the Muslims pray everyday five times a day facing East! Christian Churches have Sacrament Prayers. I think it's interesting that pretty much all humans involved in religion are taught how to give thanks and to plead for help.

It is a comforting feeling to know that religion aside, most everyone, believes that they are a Child of God. That because they are a Son or Daughter of a King, they have that divine spark within them to communicate with a higher being.

Sorry this is long. I could go for hours really. But, I could talk your ear off about just any subject I find interesting. Tomorrow I have something cool planned it's something I learned in my Student Development/College Study Skills class. I really liked it. Anyway, I have to shower. My hair was looking kinda greasy (so I wore a hat all day). I'm thinking a pixie haircut... any thoughts? ;) Mom?

Sunday, January 9, 2011

No Title.

So, I forgot to blog yesterday. I just can't think of anything to write. I decided that since this is my journal thing, I was going to write everyday for a year. Nikole is making a 365 blog where she includes a picture/description of her day or something like that. I really liked that idea and am probably going to steal the picture thing.

In conclusion, starting tomorrow January 10, 2011, I will be posting a picture of something random from my day on the blog. Even if it doesn't pertain to the blog itself. I think that's something I'd like to have for future reference... or days when i'm just looking back.

Church is at 8:30 in the morning. Sounds terrible huh? It is. Not church but waking up. Like, once i'm there, i'm loving being there and i'm actually for the most part awake and attentive. It's just rough getting up. Especially since last night I was anticipating my alarm going off. So I woke up far too many times. Once, I just was laying there waiting. I reached up checked my phone... 4am. Gross.

I am having trouble staying asleep in this new dorm. I am restless most nights. I'm not sure why though. I dunno.

Anyways I have an interview with the bishop in 10 min. So, I'm going to go make myself look presentable!
Also, there is a CES Fireside tonight. At 6pm. At the Marriott Center with Elder Cristofferson. So it should be good.

Have a WONDERFUL Sunday.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Things that Make Me Smile...

Today I received an email from someone I love very dearly with the advice "Be happy and smile- people are attracted to happy people."

And, well, who DOESN'T like to be attractive?! ;)

So, in that light I decided to make a list of all things that make me happy/smile so when i'm feeling sad/down I can come and look at this!

  • Seeing or hanging out with my family.
  • Emails from my Dad.
  • Talking to my family on the phone. (Extended and Immediate).
  • Random nice texts/emails/facebook posts etc...
  • Weird and random yet surprisingly flowing conversations with the BF A-rod.
  • People commenting on my blog.
  • Being around Chase.
  • Sweet, cute, honest boys.
  • Driving in the car, listening to my little brothers tell me about their day.
  • Listening to GOOD music.
  • Good, uplifting church lessons.
  • Thoughts of summer.
  • Looking at my snowboard.
  • Laughing. With anyone.
  • My mom. She really is the prettiest lady in the whole world. I have the picture to prove it. It's become one of my favorites.
  • My Dad's funny, but SUPER lame jokes.
  • I already mentioned Chase.
  • Hayden and his seemingly quiet nature, yet secretly funny personality.
  • Blake and his muscles. 
  • My Grandma. I love her.
  • My Aunt and Uncle in Utah, and their continued kindness and support.
  • My CuZ. When she talks to me.
  • Letters. Or mail in general.
  • Good friends.
  • Free food.
  • Snow. And warm weather. It's a shame they can't coexist.
  • Getting done with a long day of class.
  • Working with kids. Or just talking to them. Especially Bella. I swear. 
  • Which brings me to the Tanners and the Taylors. Thinking about them and talking to them makes me realize just how nice it is to have people who aren't quite family really be like family.
  • Late night conversations that make little sense.
  • Late night conversations that make perfect sense and are REAL.
  • Pictures. And being weird in them.
  • Pictures where I look GOOD.
  • The knowledge I have about WHO I am, WHERE I'm going and WHY I'm here.
  • Being asked out on a date.
  • Getting a compliment.
  • Entertaining others.
  • Good dreams.
  • Funny jokes/phrases or comments people make casually.
  • Awkward situations.
  • Family. Have I mentioned that yet?
Most recent. Sorry Dad. I don't have one with you. :(
On here before. BUT the most recent of all 6 of us that I have.

The Whole Sammons Clan!

  •  Having fun with COOL roommates.
  • Karl. Aka the best poster/friend ever. He's on the back of my door.
  • Ice skating and my World Dance class.
  • Straight, non-frizzy, hair.
  • My ipod. I need a new one though.
  • Days when I look so good that i'd date myself. ;)
  • Learning sign language. My teacher is actually legit deaf. I went up and tried to talk to her and we just could NOT communicate.
  • This list. 
  • Doing nice things for people. 
  • Changing into pajamas at the end of a long day.
  • Taking off heels after walking around in them ALL day.
  • Writing a good paper.
  • Oh and family.
Well, I gotta go! There is some dance/activity thing starting at 8 and I gotta go get ready!!

In the words of my personal idol Glozell (for those of you who are unaware of this gem... youtube is all I have to say):

"Peace N' Blessins"